Cilantro health benefits and effects: Cilantro is an ancient cultivated plant and is used worldwide as a spice.
It has documented antispasmodic, antiflatulent, and antimicrobial properties, as can be expected for a plant containing essential oils.
As a spice, cilantro or coriander thus contributes to the digestibility of food. Let us look at the benefits of cilantro, the usages, how to plant, and more here.
Table of Contents
9 Best Cilantro Health Benefits and Effects
1. Cilantro purifies the organism from toxins and heavy metals
Cilantro is one of the most effective natural means of detoxifying the organism. It binds the molecules of toxins and heavy metals, such as mercury, and drains them from the body.
2. Cilantro helps with skin diseases.
All the healing properties of cilantro are also said to have a healing effect on numerous skin diseases such as rashes or fungal infections. You can also use the infusion for this purpose.
3. Cilantro is a natural remedy for anemia.
If you suffer from anemia, regularly add a handful of iron-rich cilantro leaves to your soup, salad, or vegetables. Alternatively, you can use chopped coriander leaves mixed with olive oil, salt, and spices as a tasty spread.
4. Cilantro protects the eyes.
The antioxidants contained in cilantro herb, vitamins A and C, minerals and essential oils, preserve and strengthen the eyes. An infusion of coriander leaves can relieve the symptoms of conjunctivitis.
5. Cilantro normalizes digestion
The consumption of fresh cilantro leaves stimulates the appetite. With its essential oils, coriander stimulates metabolism, especially the function of the liver and intestines. Its antibacterial properties also have a healing effect on bacterial diarrhea.
6. Cilantro alleviates arthritis and rheumatism.
The active ingredients 1,8-cineol and linoleic acid contained in cilantro relieve swelling caused by rheumatic diseases and arthritis. The draining effect of coriander also reduces water retention caused by kidney problems.
7. Cilantro heals mouth ulcers and sores in the mouth
Citronellol, a component of essential cilantro oil, is an excellent antiseptic and also acts against microbes. The consumption of coriander has a healing effect on mouth blisters and small ulcers. At the same time, it provides a fresh breath.
8. Cilantro lowers cholesterol and blood sugar levels.
The acids contained in cilantro have a substantial impact against cholesterol in the blood and clean veins and arteries. By stimulating the endocrine glands, coriander causes insulin to be getting secreted from the pancreas and helps people with diabetes to better regulate blood sugar levels.
9. Cilantro alleviates menstrual cramps.
As cilantro has a strong influence on the endocrine glands, it helps with an irregular cycle and relieves menstrual problems.
A related video about “Homemade Cilantro Pesto”.
“Make this spicy and tangy cilantro pesto yourself as a money-saving alternative to jarred pesto. This recipe packs more flavor and antioxidant power than what you’d buy at the supermarket for a fraction of the cost.”
Video Credit: Live Sonima
Usage of Cilantro For Health
The seeds and extracts from cilantro seeds are usually getting used for medicinal purposes. The essential oils of cilantro are digestive, appetizing, and antispasmodic. Accordingly, coriander seeds are getting used to treat gastrointestinal disorders. For the seeds to develop their full effect, they have to be crushed or destroyed. Only in this way are the essential oils released.
The essential oil of cilantro shows antibacterial, antiviral, and antimycotic effects. Due to its anti-inflating properties, the essential oil of coriander can be getting used in combination with olive or sunflower oil for soothing stomach massages. On the psychological level, the essential oil of cilantro has a strengthening, refreshing, and balancing effect.
In World naturopathy, coriander is considered a detoxifying agent for heavy metals. Toxic metals such as cadmium, lead, aluminum, and mercury are to be getting eliminated with the help of the plant. Since mercury is often getting released during the removal of amalgam fillings, coriander is part of detoxification cures that are getting carried out as part of dental restorations.
Cilantro vs. Parsley
Cilantro tastes utterly different from parsley, and the difference could hardly be more striking.
Coriander has a very own, intense taste. Many people don’t like it, although it is used abundantly in all kinds of dishes in Brazilian and Asian cuisine practically every day.
In Turkish and Greek dishes, on the other hand, parsley is traditionally more common than coriander, but here too, the taste is a matter of debate.
However, anyone who claims that coriander green has even a slight similarity in taste to leaf parsley cannot distinguish sweet from salty and sour from bitter.
What we can somewhat imagine is that there is a mix-up here: Leaf parsley and coriander green look quite similar.
In case of doubt, tear off one leaf and try it. For all who do not know it: if it tastes like parsley, it is parsley. If it feels completely different, then not!
What are the alternatives to cilantro?
As long as you only want to decorate your food with a fresh green, you can use parsley as a cilantro substitute. Please note that the taste of the herb is entirely different.
If you want to imitate the taste of cilantro, you should make a mixture of fresh dill, parsley, and tarragon. It does not quite match the taste of the right ingredient, and it can be getting used as a substitute.
Also note that ground cilantro or coriander seeds are not alternatives, as they have entirely different tastes.
Ground cilantro is mainly getting found in Indian cuisine, where it is getting used for many kinds of curry.
Caraway, cumin, and fennel are suitable to replace ground cilantro.
However, it is best to mix the three spices mentioned above and eventually use the mixture as a cilantro substitute.
Remember that an alternative always involves a compromise. You will not get a similar taste as with the cilantro ingredient.
Side Effects Of Cilantro
Side effects and interactions are not getting known with cilantro. Only a few people are allergic to coriander or cilantro.
Cilantro allergy reactions are getting known when used in oil extracts.
But cilantro or coriander oil contains plenty of linalool. This substance is added as a fragrance to numerous cosmetic products and can when applied to the skin, lead to allergic reactions.
Medicinal plants containing essential oils must not be used around the nose and mouth of infants and small children, as this can cause breathing difficulties. It is especially true if camphor or menthol is present in the oil.
People who have asthma must also consult their doctor in advance to find out whether they are allowed to take the appropriate medication. Inhaling with essential oils is taboo for them, as this can trigger an asthma attack.
How Cilantro Grows – Plant Cilantro
Planting Cilantro in the open
Annual cilantro can be grown in semi-shade and under full sun. Sowing in an open field bed, preferably well supplied with compost, should not take place before the mid or end of April. It then produces the first seedlings within about two weeks in most cases. One seed will usually produce two seedlings.
If there is a lot of frosts, you can prefer cilantro on the windowsill and plant it outdoors from mid-May onwards.
However, as soon as the plants are relatively stable in growth, you must transplant the cilantro individually at a distance of about 10 to 15 centimeters. You should then water the young plants regularly, keep them slightly moist at all times.
Planting cilantro in a pot
You can also grow cilantro as a pot culture on the balcony and terrace without any problems. In this case, it is getting recommended to add a little sand to the potting soil, which should be as rich in nutrients as possible. Furthermore, the pots used should have a drainage system that drains water well.
How to care cilantro
You should keep adult cilantro dry throughout, only water moderately if necessary. The cilantro does not tolerate waterlogging at all.
During the season, you should regularly remove weeds around the cilantro and loosen the soil a little. Fertilization is usually no longer necessary.
In mid-June, the cilantro, which grows to a height of about 70 centimeters, begins to flower, with its white flower umbels looking very pretty. And from August to September, it already produces its seeds, which you can not only collect for new sowing but also harvest as a spice grain.
If possible, you should reap the seeds while they are still light brown and let them ripen in the sun. It leads to lower harvest losses, as the seed precipitates quickly. Then store the grain in a dry place.
But you can also harvest the leaves (coriander) of cilantro – similar to parsley – and use it optimally, especially in Asian dishes.
FAQ Cilantro health benefits and effects
What does cilantro look like?
Cilantro (Coriandrum sativum) grows up to 60 centimeters high. The leaves are light green and pinnate one to three times. The plant forms small whitish to reddish flowers, which are getting arranged in three- to five-branched double umbels. The plant has an intense and bug-like smell.
Is cilantro coriander?
Cilantro and coriander are getting harvested from the same plant, Coriandrum Sativum. The stems and leaves from the coriander plant are called cilantro, but when the flowers of the plant give seeds, its called coriander. There is a fantastic difference in taste between the ripe seeds, the coriander fruits, and the fresh leaves of the cilantro. Coriander seeds refine bread, plum jam, and pastries.
For what is cilantro good?
Besides its unique taste, cilantro is healthy for humans. If you suffer from a feeling of fullness, irritable bowel syndrome, and other digestive problems, coriander, for example, in the form of coriander tea, can alleviate minor complaints. Coriander green strengthens your immune system and helps with inflammation.
How to store cilantro?
Fresh cilantro is usually getting bought in pots. This way, it thrives best on the windowsill at home. Cilantro stalks stay clean if they are placed in water or wrapped in damp kitchen paper and stored in the refrigerator. But cilantro seeds (coriander) are best getting stored in dark, dry and airtight packaging.
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